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training for crits

Old 05-03-07, 01:46 PM
  #1  
sbskates
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training for crits

has anyone who wanted to get way better and spent say a several days a week focused on all aspects of crit racing , sprints, intervals cornering etc and say sought out an area one could pracitce as close to a crit course as possible and how did it work for you or not? and what did you do.
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Old 05-03-07, 02:10 PM
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1-minute max effort intervals are great... Start with 8x1min and 2-3 min recoveries, and shorten the recovery time as you can tolerate.

Cornering sprints are a good workout for an easy day. Sprint 3-4 seconds to the corner, turn, sprint 3-4 seconds out. Do 5 or 6 of 'em with full recoveries in between.

If you have a powermeter (heck, even if you don't), "microbursts" are a great workout. 10-minute sets of 15sec on, 15 sec off, and the goal for each burst is 300% of threshold power, i.e. HARD.

Another good trainer workout is the Race Day DVD, www.realrides.tv. If you can hang with that, you'll do just fine in any lower-cat crit.

Good luck!
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Old 05-03-07, 02:11 PM
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I did lots of cornerning/sprinting practice with some friends at a huge parking lot that is not in use that it about a 30 min ride away.

It helped my crit skills immensely. Though I think confidence was the best boost.
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Old 05-03-07, 02:33 PM
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Motorpace at 30+ on a tight crit course. Attack the moto every 10 laps. When you attack, the moto should increase 1mph. Force yourself to jump back onto the moto when it passes you.

Trust me, when you get into a real crit, you'll be bored.

The hardest part of this workout is finding a safe place to do it. But once you do....
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Old 05-03-07, 02:38 PM
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Go to a park with a friend and practice leaning on each other while riding on the grass. When people start leaning on you in a race you won't get freaked out. You can have and the speed in the world but if you can't handle getting bumped you'll be in trouble.
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Old 05-03-07, 03:36 PM
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+1 to all the above.

I'll add to learn to countersteer intentionally. The corners will suddenly seem a lot less sharp.

When you touch your brakes, remember to downshift. Downshift 2 cogs going into a sharp corner (if you're coasting). I guess that's not training, but you should practice it with the cornering workouts above.

An alternative to motorpacing is to go into an urban area and draft cars and attack them. It's super fun, but not as focused as motorpacing a crit course.
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Old 05-03-07, 08:28 PM
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Best way to train for crits is to race crits.
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Old 05-03-07, 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets
+1 to all

An alternative to motorpacing is to go into an urban area and draft cars and attack them. It's super fun, but not as focused as motorpacing a crit course.
WTF? So you're *that* guy! You're an animal! I had a buddy who used to draft transit busses ... until one of them did a brake check on him.

I think the best thing you can do is honestly just ride with a buddy or two on a long block, and take turns attacking each other, especially out of the corners.
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Old 05-03-07, 10:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Stallionforce
WTF? So you're *that* guy!
I suffer from a 16 year bumper addiction. A guy on my first team had a white van, and we used to put black stripes all over the rear bumper with our tires while motorpacing. We used to have him come by fast like an attack and try to get on. Lots of fun.
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Old 05-03-07, 11:37 PM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets
I suffer from a 16 year bumper addiction. A guy on my first team had a white van, and we used to put black stripes all over the rear bumper with our tires while motorpacing. We used to have him come by fast like an attack and try to get on. Lots of fun.
I hope your kids don't see you do this!!!!!

Or maybe it was when you were younger, long before kids...makes me laugh about how it wasn't until I was well into adulthood that I found out about the crazy stuff my dad used to do as a teenager. Stuff like drag racing his friends at night when the streets in town were empty, tricks on his motorcycle (hmm wonder why he told all his kids not to ride), etc.
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Old 05-04-07, 06:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Snicklefritz
I hope your kids don't see you do this!!!!!
+1
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Old 05-04-07, 07:20 AM
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My crit racing improved dramatically from doing cyclocross. Might sound odd but the two are similar in a lot of ways.
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Old 05-04-07, 07:40 AM
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna
My crit racing improved dramatically from doing cyclocross. Might sound odd but the two are similar in a lot of ways.
+1 -same here, i think all the efforts spent getting back up-to-speed after tricky turns and when remounting in cross did worlds for my ability to accelerate out of turns and recover quickly in crits
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Old 05-04-07, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by wfrogge
Best way to train for crits is to race crits.
Best answer so far.
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Old 05-04-07, 08:13 AM
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna
My crit racing improved dramatically from doing cyclocross. Might sound odd but the two are similar in a lot of ways.
I hoping my crit training will help me come cross season. (But I don't know what my crit training will do for the 60+ mile loop with over 6,000 feet of climbing in the IronCross in PA.)
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Old 05-04-07, 11:00 AM
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Originally Posted by wfrogge
Best way to train for crits is to race crits.
+2

You need to do two things to race crits well - be comfy in the field and have speed. I'm living proof you don't need very much aerobic fitness for crits.

I heard from trackies that track racing really improves speed. I can't verify this but the Cat 4's and 3's on the track kicked my sorry butt when I did track (twice).

Find a local weekday series (if possible) and do it every week. Ideally the race should be relatively flat, fast, and have real turns (no park type no-turn settings).

Doing turns on your own really doesn't do anything. It's like driving your car in a parking lot - you figure out the basics (gas, brake, shift, turn) but when you get into traffic it's a whole different ball game.

hope this helps and good luck,
cdr
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Old 05-04-07, 11:05 AM
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Practice crits are the best. You get in sprint and interval training. Also learn pack-handling skills and tactics. If you're in S.B., there's one every Wed. night 6pm at Research Park.
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Old 05-04-07, 11:12 AM
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Track racing is also good. Emphasizes leg speed, pack riding, and quick anaerobic efforts.

With good pack skills, you can make up for a lack of fitness and just sit in. Most lower level category crits on flat courses will end in a pack sprint anyways.
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Old 05-04-07, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by grebletie
Track racing is also good. Emphasizes leg speed, pack riding, and quick anaerobic efforts.

With good pack skills, you can make up for a lack of fitness and just sit in. Most lower level category crits on flat courses will end in a pack sprint anyways.
Agreed. Once you get up to the 3s, if you can't sprint for the top 6, you had better have one hell of an LT if you have future aspirations.

My main problem last year was getting into poor position late in a race. I can open it up pretty good, but never found myself where I wanted to be at the end of the race. I started getting to the front and staying there, but then found myself getting swarmed by others. So I determined that I need to attack, blow people out the back, and take the race into my own hands. I figured I may be a small little ***** who is unlikely to win a pack sprint against the 80 kilo boys, but if I can hurt them enough or make them play my game enough times I have a good chance of doing well in the end. Throw in an attack every other lap, see who comes with, and make people chase. It IS frustrating when it doesn't work, but eventually, something sticks for the rest of the race or long enough to hurt the guys back in the pack who have to chase.
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Old 05-04-07, 02:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Duke of Kent
Agreed. Once you get up to the 3s, if you can't sprint for the top 6, you had better have one hell of an LT if you have future aspirations.

My main problem last year was getting into poor position late in a race. I can open it up pretty good, but never found myself where I wanted to be at the end of the race. I started getting to the front and staying there, but then found myself getting swarmed by others. So I determined that I need to attack, blow people out the back, and take the race into my own hands. I figured I may be a small little ***** who is unlikely to win a pack sprint against the 80 kilo boys, but if I can hurt them enough or make them play my game enough times I have a good chance of doing well in the end. Throw in an attack every other lap, see who comes with, and make people chase. It IS frustrating when it doesn't work, but eventually, something sticks for the rest of the race or long enough to hurt the guys back in the pack who have to chase.
+1 if you have the matches to burn, use them to as much advantage as possible.
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Old 05-04-07, 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Duke of Kent
Agreed. Once you get up to the 3s, if you can't sprint for the top 6, you had better have one hell of an LT if you have future aspirations.

My main problem last year was getting into poor position late in a race. I can open it up pretty good, but never found myself where I wanted to be at the end of the race. I started getting to the front and staying there, but then found myself getting swarmed by others. So I determined that I need to attack, blow people out the back, and take the race into my own hands. I figured I may be a small little ***** who is unlikely to win a pack sprint against the 80 kilo boys, but if I can hurt them enough or make them play my game enough times I have a good chance of doing well in the end. Throw in an attack every other lap, see who comes with, and make people chase. It IS frustrating when it doesn't work, but eventually, something sticks for the rest of the race or long enough to hurt the guys back in the pack who have to chase.
That'll be my strategy come the beginning of crit season. My sprint is improving, but still subpar compared to others around me level. My neuromuscular pop is good, and my 5 min / FT w/kg power is higher that many Cat 4s, I think. So, strategy will be to attack early, and attack often. Breakaways are going to be about the only way for me to win a crit.
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